Victoria 2 (PC)

Victoria 2 is a grand strategy game from Paradox Interactive and is considered by many to be one of their more difficult games to master due to its complexity. I by no means consider myself a master, or even good at the game, I simply know how to play a bit. I have some experience with their other games such as Stellaris Console Edition (PS4) and Crusader Kings 2 (PC) and I have to admit, it truly is far more complex.

To start you pick a real-world country in the 19th century, and manage it in just about every aspect possible. I will use America as an example since that is where the tutorial takes place and it is my home country. You start just prior to the Texas war for independence from Mexico and is really one of your first major decisions. Do you want to get involved or do you leave them alone to fend for themselves? Well wanting to do the right thing for America, I helped them out and they later became a state, true to life. From here I was setting tax rates, attempting to settle Oklahoma and out west more and moved into what is now Canada. This pissed off the British who at this point still own Canada, they then invaded me. Not know how to really defend myself they took over my new settlements in the north, and the New England states all the way down to New York before I restarted the game.

I decided to not piss off Britan and rush the American Civil war by instantly pissing off the south over slavery, which resulted in hundreds of thousands of rebels and the North getting stomped in the Civil war. After that every 6 months a new civil war would start. Yup, time to restart.

Around the 5th restart I got the hang of the game, most of what is modern America eas under my control, I managed to outlaw slavery while avoiding the American Civil war completely and my tax rate was almost 0 due to my economy being insane with investments all around the world. Until the British, Mexico and for some reason I still don’t understand Haiti invaded me. About 2 months in and Hati quit the war, but fighting in both the north and south was taking its toll on my troops and economy. About 6 years later Mexico asked for peace and gives me Arizona for me to leave them be. The damn Britsh are the bane of my existence tho.

These are the types of scenarios you will come across in Victoria 2, and they get even more insane and weird if you decide to start as a country like Italy or Egypt. You can do things like make Canada never exist, let the Cherokee thrive, have a small African nation take over Asia, your skill level and imagination are the only things stopping you. Well, that and a pretty high learning curve and make no mistake, it is high. That is the only real issue with the Paradox grand strategy games, they take time and dedication to learn, but damn are they worth it. Best wishes and may the gaming gods bring you glory.

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Depraved (PC)

Depraved is a pretty typical city builder but this one has some survival aspects to it as well. This is a nice change of pace from the usual build stuff, wait awhile build new stuff we usually get. This time in the old west you are not only picking a spot to build that will allow you ample room to build, but also access to supplies such as rock, wood, and food. You will then need to build enough houses for everyone, give them jobs and attract new people.

If this sounds easy, it is because I haven’t gotten to the part yet where bears will occasionally attack you if you wander too close, the winter will come and attempt to freeze you to death. Bandit attacks will also come and go because what is the wild west without that?

The game does a great job of making you decide what to build and when since it won’t be easy to stockpile materials in the early game. You will constantly be building something to attract more people or keep people alive. For an early access game, I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of content, and I will be checking back in or more. Best wishes and may the gaming gods bring you glory.

Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft Online Services Being Investigated By the UK

As reported by Nintendolife it seems that the UK is investigating whether or not the big three’s online services are fair or not to consumers, most notably their Auto-renew and their cancelation and refund policies. The Competition and Markets Authority basically has some concerns as to the legality of some of these practices and are willing to take action if they are now. This could be an interesting thing to watch. Best wishes and may the gaming gods bring you glory.

Far: Lone Sails (PS4)

As always I like to get my full disclosure out of the way, Far: Lone Sails is made by Okomitive who was kind enough to give me a review copy of the game. It is always appreciated.

Far: Lone Sails is a simple concept. Take your machine (shown below) and travel this seemingly post-apocalyptic world.

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You have quite a bit to manage between keeping your engine going, picking up the items you use for fuel and not smashing into things. The further you go however you can upgrade your ship. I won’t spoil what upgrades you get, but they do make certain things easier or give you fewer things within your ship to focus on, but this does come with a trade-off. While things are easier within your ship things outside get a bit tougher.

The game, however, is never all that hard, and I don’t believe it is meant to be. I had quite the relaxing time with this game. Watching the scenery go by was amazing and beautiful. The weather changing, the ever-changing world as amazing to look at.

The sound was also nice, the chugging of the engines the steam pushing the ship faster, me slamming it into a wall. All the sounds in game served their purpose well and the music set the scene in ways I never expected going into it. I was constantly thinking about what could possibly have happened to this world, wondering why it became what it is, where am I going, where did this ship come from? These are the questions I had kept me going. Are there answers? I won’t tell you. I knew nothing about this game going into it and you shouldn’t either. The true joy of the game is simply going and seeing it all.

The game isn’t perfect, as no game is but I truthfully can’t point to anything truly wrong with it aside from it being rather short and for its price point ($14.99 I believe on Steam and consoles I believe) that isn’t an issue. This one is a solid 9/10 worth buying. I greatly enjoyed it. Best wishes and may the gaming gods bring you glory.

Games I keep going back to.

We all have games that for whatever reason we just can’t quit, even if we want to. Maybe we just love the challenge or we simply need to prove we can beat the game or maybe there is something else. Here are just some random games I can’t seem to quit.

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For my long time followers, you probably knew Kerbal Space Program Enhanced Edition (and its many DLC and PC versions) would be on the list. You also know I am not great at the game, tho looking at my trophy list I seem to be better than many. People seem to fall into three categories, gods at building stuff and can’t get off Kerbin. The smaller third category is like me and can get to a few places, but not many. Either way, I will probably play this for years to come.

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Dark Souls 2 Scholars of the First Sin is another game I don’t stop playing despite my many issues with it. I want to beat it because I personally don’t know anyone that has finished it and I feel one of us has despite it being such a bad yet good game.

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Cities Skylines PlayStation 4 is another game I go back to and I know why. I loved Sim City as a kid. This is my new Sim City and sometimes I just want to sit down and see what can happen and I come up with. Will my city do well? Will it burn? I have no clue, but I like to find out.

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Phantasy Star 4 Sega Genesis Classics is one of my favorite games of all time, and I play it probably once a year or so and have since it was released on the Sega Genesis.

So what about you guys? What are the games that keep you all coming back? Best wishes and may the gaming gods bring you glory.

Sega Genesis Mini

Sega is joining in on the nostalgia train, and this September will be releasing a mini Sega Genesis with 40 games and cost $80. There is a partial list over at Polygon, tho my only real concern is there is already a pretty substantial collection on the Xbox, Sony, and Switch. Many of the games in this mini already exist on there, so I am hard pressed to believe they will find 40 games warranting that price tag. It will be interesting to see tho, best wishes and may the gaming gods bring you glory.